How to keep a hot dog cool in hot weather

When it’s hot, hot, hot like it is now, us humans sweat it out to cool down. Dogs don’t sweat like we do and instead lose their heat through panting, meaning they need a little bit more care than we do in the heat.

For some dogs in particular, excessive heat can be a challenge. Brachycephalic breeds have shorter noses and narrower breathing passages and have to work harder to cool down. This means they’ll pant a bit more than other breeds, and if they’re panting more than usual, it can be a sign of overheating.

To keep hot dogs cool in the heat, here’s what you can do:

Set up hydration stations:

Whether you’re out and about or spending the day at home together, give your dog plenty of chance to take regular water breaks, with fresh water top ups when you can. Travel bowls are easy to carry around with you on days out and super handy for giving your dog a refreshing drink or lunch on the go.

Feed it when they need it:

Some dogs lose their appetite when it’s hot and can prefer to graze instead. Try feeding smaller and more frequent portions of their food to help them maintain their nutritional requirements at a pace that suits them. For chilled out treats, try giving your dog an ice cube to lick, or mash up and freeze some banana in your ice cube tray for a frozen summer snack.

Stay shady:

On very hot days, extra hot concrete pavements can leave dogs with sore paws. If you can, avoid the hottest part of the day by heading out for your daily walks either earlier in the morning or later in the day, walking them on the grass when possible. You can give your dog’s paws extra protection against hot surfaces with little booties, that can even double up as a mini fashion statement.

Keep it cool:

Invest in a cooling mat, or wet a towel for them to lie on. Or for complete cool-downs, set up a shallow paddling pool for your dog to splash around in. If your dog’s more of an insider, close the curtains to keep the heat out and set up a fan for the ultimate chill out den.

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11 summer getaways for you and your dog (that you’ll want to book right now)

It’s July already, how and when did that happen? We’re running out of summer months in which to plan a holiday for and if you’re still waiting to book yours, what are you waiting for? Life is busy, so we’ve done all the work for you and found 11 perfect summer getaways from our friends at PetsPyjamas, that we’re sure you’ll want to book right away.

 

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The Bridge House is a country-chic, luxury bed and breakfast destination beautifully located on the River Wye next to Wilton Bridge. A few minutes’ walk along the river with your dog in tow, takes you to the small market town of Ross-on-Wye.

 

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A Grade II listed Georgian inn, The Dundas Arms is a picturesque country pub with rooms situated in the stunning village of Kintbury, West Berkshire. With picture postcard countryside, it’s perfect for country walks or strolling with your dog along the towpath by the canal.

 

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Recently refurbished, this 300-year-old pub is now a gorgeous dog-friendly country inn. With comfy rooms, a picture-window restaurant and lots of country charm, it’s no surprise The Welldiggers is a firm favourite among the locals.

 

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St Valery is a boutique B&B on the high street in Alnmouth with the village’s beach just a short stroll away making this wonderful holiday destination for coastal-loving canines.

 

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Positioned on the edge of the historic Cranborne Chase, the most beautiful of English countryside, The Grosvenor Arms is a newly refurbished hotel with a history dating back to medieval times.

 

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The Fontmell is a wonderful dog-friendly pub with rooms in the pretty village of Fontmell Magna. Set on the edge of the Cranborne Chase, your furry friend will be spoilt for choice with gorgeous countryside to explore and sniff.

 

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Albion House Hotel in Ramsgate sits in pride of place on the top of the East Cliff looking out over Albion Gardens, and out to sea there are spectacular views of the Royal Harbour.

 

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The Baiting House is a stunning dog-friendly country inn set in the beautiful little village of Upper Sapey, close to Worcester. Serving delicious locally sourced fare and with a great selection of local ales, ciders and a great wine line its the perfect place for a cosy weekend break with your dog in tow.

 

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The Corran Resort is a boutique hotel hidden in the marshlands of Carmarthenshire countryside in Wales, perfect for a well-earned break of relaxation.

 

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The Fish Hotel is the ultimate back-to-nature bolthole for pets and their owners – but with a little touch of luxury! Set within the 400-acre Farncombe Estate, The Fish is a collection of quirky country houses that are affordable but super stylish.

 

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Surrounded by beautiful Normandy parkland and with a long and rather colourful history, Montgomery’s Gîte at Le Château de la Motte is a magical holiday home with everything you and your pet need to relax in style.
And don’t forget, you can win £250 off a PetsPyjamas break by posting a photo of your dog.

Everything you need to know about dog passports

If you’re heading abroad with your canine companion this year, one of the things on your holiday checklist should be your dog’s pet passport. Here’s what you need to know:

What is a pet passport?

A pet passport is an official document that includes a record of all the treatments your pet has had. It allows animals to travel abroad to certain countries via Eurotunnel and ferries under the Pet Travel Scheme. Without it, your dog won’t be allowed to leave or re-enter the UK.

What information does it contain?

Your dog’s pet passport includes:

  • Details of ownership
  • Their description, including their unique microchip ID
  • Details of your dog’s vaccinations, blood tests and any treatments

How do I get a pet passport?

Pet passports are available from most vets. In order to apply, you’ll need to take your dog’s vaccination and other medical records with you. If your vet doesn’t issue pet passports, they’ll be able to give you the details of one that does. In order to leave and re-enter the UK, you’ll need to make sure your dog:

  • Has been microchipped
  • Is older than 15 weeks at the time of travelling
  • Is vaccinated against rabies
  • Has been treated for tapeworm

Note: Chat to your vet about the timelines needed for vaccinations and treatments.
Some countries that aren’t listed under the Pet Travel Scheme can be more complicated to travel to.

Before you go, check to see if your destination is listed so you can make any specific preparations that might be required.

The 9 poos every dog owner will know

Life with your dog can be full of surprises, like that one you found behind the sofa when you only nipped out to the shops for an hour. 💩

When it comes down to poo, us dog owners have seen it all. Meet the 9 poos you’ll have picked up at some point in your dog’s life.

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The nightmare poo. Will likely need some support from water to wash away.
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Easy to scoop, strange to look at. Provokes questions as to how it came to be.
It’s smooth, it’s scoopable – there’s no better poo out there.
Why even bother?
A wondrous creation for your dog to be proud of.

 

You saw the squat, you moved towards the squat but the poo’s final resting place is unknown. Cue the quest for the lost poo.
They say that two’s company and the Double Logger knows this to be the case.
This one has dreams of its own.
Where did it come from? What even is it? We’ll never know.

So whichever poo the day brings, rejoice – for the days of frantic poo bag pocket-searching are over. As part of your monthly tails.com bundle, your dog’s poo bags can be delivered with their tails.com food, straight to your door.

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Your dog’s holiday checklist sorted

Once the holiday’s booked, it’s time for the countdown begin. It’s time to download that countdown app on our phones and make sure the whole family’s up to date on how many sleeps are left.

No matter how far in advance we plan, there always seems to be that one thing that we’ve forgotten. And when you’ve got four more legs coming with you, there are a few extra things you’ll need to pack in the bag too:

For staying hydrated:

Portable water bowl and water bottle

Travelling is thirsty work. For those stops when you all need to stretch your legs and big long drink, make sure you’re all stocked up for the whole family.

For getting comfortable:

Blankets

Long journeys in the car are far more enjoyable when you’re comfortable. Your dog will thank you for making that hard back seat a softer cushion to lie on.

Favourite toy

Home comforts (like that one toy they always bring to the front door when you come home) will make your dog feel much better about being in the car.

Food and treats:

Your dog’s Tails.com Tailor-made blend

Holidays aren’t the same without enjoying delicious food, so don’t forget to take your dog’s favourite with you.

Dental Dailies

There’s no need to forget about dental hygiene just because you’re on holiday. Keep your dog’s breath fresh with one a day.

Training treats

To make sure your dog’s being just as obedient as they are when they’re at home.

Practical makes perfect:

Poo bag holder (full of poo bags)

Hands up if you’ve got a story about being caught out without one? You won’t want that story to have taken place in a car. Trust us on this one.

Travel sickness pills (if needed)

These can be handy to keep in the glove compartment for dogs who are prone to car sickness. If your dog needs a prescription, chat to your vet before you go.

Lead

Different walks sometimes require different leads, so take the ones you know you’ll need.

Travel towel & Grooming Kit

Rolling in the river? Splashing in the sea? Pouncing in the pond? Getting wet in the water is a delight for many dogs, but the smell of wet dog isn’t so great for owners…

Raincoat

If you’re holidaying in the UK, you’ll know we’re being serious when we say that rain is a very real possibility.

First aid kit

Sometimes accidents happen, and being prepared is always smart.

To keep them entertained:

Favourite toys

A holiday well spent is one that’s been filled with fun. Take tug ropes, balls or whatever floats your dog’s boat to play with.

Camera/Phone

Ok, this one isn’t specifically for your dog, but we know you’ll want to capture your favourite family moments for sure.

And if you’re heading abroad:

Before you get excited and begin to look at booking last minute deals, it’s important to make sure you’ve met all the necessary requirements for pet travel.

7 tips for taking your dog on holiday

Being a dog owner makes so many things in life so easy, like an evening being well spent by simply just curling up on the sofa. What’s not so easy, is being able to make spontaneous bookings for that trip you’ve just seen on PetsPyjamas’ travel guide, because there’s so much to plan. The last thing you’ll want is to arrive at your holiday destination realising you’ve forgotten the poo bags.

We’ve simplified it for you so you know exactly what you need to consider before you can up and go:

Check the accommodation

Booking through designated dog-friendly sites like PetsPyjamas will ensure you find the perfect place to call home for the holiday, with added touches like dog treats to make you smile and your dog’s tail wag. Find the perfect location for the whole family to retreat to after a long day out, muddy paws and all.

Visit the vet before you go

Before you jet off, make sure your dog’s up to date with any treatments, vaccinations and general health checks. Once this is ticked off your list, you’ll be able to watch your dog race across the beach and bound over the hills without a care in the world. If you’re heading abroad, check to see if there are any local diseases to be aware of and chat to your vet first.

Passports at the ready

Just like you, your dog won’t be allowed to cross the UK border (both in and out) without their passport. If you’re going abroad this summer, you’ll need to have your dog’s passport, find out everything you need to know here.

Make an essential item checklist

Imagine the look your dog would give you when you arrived at your long awaited destination to realise you’d forgotten to pack their favourite toy. Making a list a few weeks in advance will help you to make sure you’ve got absolutely everything you need – even if you do leave the packing until the last minute.

Refresh your dog’s command knowledge

Remember that scene in Marley and Me where Marley gets sight of a bird and runs after it, only to be chased down the beach by a mortified Owen Wilson and his friend in convoy? In reality, onlookers might not be quite so amused. You won’t want your dog terrorising local fauna, so practising commands together will give you added peace of mind when you’re off exploring.

Practise travelling

If your dog’s not used to longer drives, getting some practice in before you go can help them enjoy the journey more. Make sure you’ve got a safety harness for when the car’s moving and stop regularly for breaks to stretch all the legs in the car.

Peace of mind

Unwinding into holiday mode is a glorious feeling and you’ve earned it. Just make sure your relaxed self is still keeping an eye on how your dog’s getting on, making sure they’re staying away from steep drops on cliffside walks, not swimming too far out in the sea and getting on well with other dogs and animals.

PP Comp Blog

The best thing about a holiday is the fact that you’re #SpendingItTogether. Find out how you can win £250 off a Pets Pyjamas holiday by just taking a photo.

Win £250 off a dog-friendly holiday

It’s hot, it’s summer and our weekend plans are full of family BBQs and fun in the sun with our dogs.

We all know that the best thing about summer is #SpendingItTogether and we want to see how you and your dog spend it. That’s why we’ve teamed up with dog-friendly holiday experts PetsPyjamas to bring you the exciting chance to win £250 off your next getaway together.

To be in with the chance of winning, all you have to do is:

  • Snap a shot of you and your dog, telling us what you’re up to – using the hashtag #SpendingItTogether.
  • Follow @tails.com_uk
  • Follow @thepetspyjamas

So whether you’re on an idyllic beach, on the adventure of a lifetime or just keeping cool in the garden, show us how you’re #SpendingItTogether.

Good luck!

To find out everything you need to know about taking your dog on holiday, visit our holiday blog.

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Competition T’s & C’s

How it works

HOW TO PARTICIPATE: Simply post a photo or video of you and your dog of your dog to Facebook, Twitter or Instagram using the hashtag #SpendingItTogether.

∙ Follow Tails.com and PetsPyjamas on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.

START DATE: Monday 26th June 2017

END DATE: Sunday 16th July 2017

PRIZE: £250 off a dog-friendly holiday with PetsPyjamas

Prizes are non-transferable and there are no cash alternatives

∙ Our favourite photo will be chosen as the winner

∙ Winner will be notified by email and prize will be available upon confirmation of acceptance

∙ You will need to be a tails.com customer in order to enter the competition

Your data 

Tails.com is a subscription service and all participants must comply with standard account T’s & C’s

Joining this competition and participating in #SpendingItTogether indicates your consent to receive follow-up emails from tails.com. You can opt out of these emails at any time via the unsubscribe instructions in the emails you are sent

Your details will not be shared with any third parties

tails.com reserves the right to use the names and any user-submitted images or videos of winners publicly, both online and in print in perpetuity and without compensation

Additional conditions and liabilities

The contest is free to enter

Prizes will be awarded at the discretion of tails.com 

You must be 18 years or over to enter and a resident of the UK (excl. Channel Islands) to win. The delivery address for the prize must be within the UK

Tails.com cannot accept responsibility for damage, loss, or injury to you or your pet as a result of entering the competition or accepting a prize

Tails.com full name and business address: Tailsco LTD, 51a George Street, Richmond TW9 1HJ.

These Terms and Conditions are to be interpreted in accordance with English law and any dispute arising out of these Terms or their subject matter is subject to the exclusive jurisdiction of the English Courts

The best of #DogsAtPollingStations

It’s the day of the General Election, which means that #DogsAtPollingStations has resurfaced on our Twitter feeds again. Here are some of our favourite photos of dogs supporting their owners as they exercise their right to vote.

 

Meet: The Staffordshire Bull Terrier

For this month’s breed post, we have one of the UK’s most beloved breeds, the cheeky and charming Staffordshire Bull Terrier.

Origin

The origin of the Staffy links back to the Bulldog. When you picture a Bulldog today, you probably think of a short, stocky dog with wrinkles and baggy jowls, like Spike in the Tom & Jerry cartoons. Hundreds of years ago, the Bulldog had quite a different look – they were taller, with a more athletic body shape, and a longer, more pronounced snout.

In the 18th Century, the Bulldog was bred with the Manchester Terrier, with the aim to create a strong and muscular breed, much like the Bulldog, but slightly leaner and more agile. The result was what was to become known as the Staffordshire Bull Terrier.

Appearance

Staffies have a short coat and can come in many colours, such as brindle, white, red, black, blue, fawn, or a variation of these with some white markings. They’re very low maintenance when it comes to grooming and don’t shed an excessive amount in summer, so they’re a relatively clean dog (unless they dig or roll in something, of course!)

Exercise

Staffies have an endless amount of energy and enthusiasm for life. If you’re considering one of these little athletes as your next pet, you need to make sure that you have enough time to dedicate to making sure their physical needs are met. Many Staffies thrive at dog agility and activities such as flyball. A secure garden would be beneficial although not essential. This breed will do well in most living environments as long as they have the right amount of exercise and human company.

Staffies are quite hardy little dogs with not many issues, although hip and elbow dysplasia is not uncommon. This breed can also be prone to sensitive skin, which could be genetic but can also be due to an environmental factor or intolerance. If you start to notice these changes in your dog it’s always an idea to check to see if anything around the house has changed, like using a different household product, or new bedding made from a different material to what they are used to.

Staffies are known for wanting to have fun at any cost, often with a complete disregard for to their own personal safety, so they can – and do – often get themselves into all kinds of scrapes on their adventures.

Temperament

Although a relatively quiet dog not commonly known to bark much, that’s not to say that the Staffy is not vocal. Most Staffies will snore, snort, gurgle and grunt, and often have a unique singing voice compared to a yodel. They have a distinct language all of their own, and will definitely be entertaining!

Currently, on average, over 45% of dogs in animal shelters waiting to be adopted are Staffies. It can be difficult for them to find new homes as they often receive unfairly bad press, with many wrongly labelling them as a tough and/or aggressive breed. With a stocky, muscular frame, some may find this dog to be an intimidating figure. However, as anyone who knows a Staffy will tell you, you’d be hard-pressed to find a more friendly and affectionate dog. Staffies make lovingly loyal pets by nature, providing they are, like all dogs, are well trained with a good routine and house rules.

Due to their reputation for being gentle guardians and playmates to small children, they’re often nicknamed ‘The Nanny Dog’. The Staffy thrives on human company and wants nothing more than to tag along with you on your adventures. From hiking all day, to snuggling up with you on the couch to watch a movie, they will be happy to be by your side.

How to check your dog’s body condition

Among so many other things, making sure your dog maintains a healthy weight is an important part of responsible dog ownership. Being overweight or underweight can increase the risk of health problems for your dog and even limit their lifespan. With obesity on the rise in the pet population, dog owners need to know how to make sure their dogs are in shape. 

Many owners keep track of their dog’s weight by checking it on the scales. Whilst this is a great way to monitor weight, it doesn’t always give a true reflection of your dog’s health. Within breeds, sizes of dogs can vary and some dogs can be heavier than others, even when they’re in ideal condition. So along with weighing your pet regularly, it’s advisable for owners to learn how to Body Condition Score (BCS) their dog.

Here’s how to do it, featuring office dogs Monty, Bambi and Socks.

Body Condition Scoring is a really useful way to assess whether your dog is a healthy weight for their breed and size. By getting hands-on and assessing three key areas on your dog, you can work out if they are underweight, overweight or in ideal condition. The three areas to examine and feel are:

  1. Ribs
  2. Belly
  3. Waist

Once you’ve assessed these three areas, you give them a score on a five-point scale:

BCS 1 = Severely underweight

BCS 2 = Underweight

BCS 3 = Ideal condition

BCS 4 = Overweight

BCS 5 = Obese

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Here’s how to score your dog’s ribs, belly and waist to find out their Body Condition Score:

Ribs

What to do

Run your fingers over your dog’s rib cage, on either side of their chest in a head to tail direction.

What should you feel?

You should be able to feel the ribs with a slight covering of muscle over them, but they shouldn’t be visible, feel like sharp ridges or be poking out. It’s important to really feel them with your fingertips rather than just looking, as many dogs’ coats will hide the ribs from view.

Low scoring

If your dog is underweight, their ribs will protrude and feel sharp or bumpy as you run your hands along them. If this is the case, it’ll mean a lower BCS.

High scoring

If your dog is overweight the ribs will be difficult to feel as they will be covered in a layer of fat and muscle. The deeper the ribs are to feel under this layer, the more overweight your dog is and the higher the BCS.

Belly

What to do

Run your hand along your dog’s underside, again from head to tail end and also look at the belly from the side.

What should you feel?

The belly or undercarriage should start low to the ground where it meets the sternum (or breastbone) at the bottom of the rib cage. Then it should slope higher the further back towards the hips you run your hands on either side.

Low scoring

An underweight dog with a lower BCS will have a very pronounced ‘tummy tuck’ up towards the hips and groin region.

High scoring

If the belly droops or hangs down near the floor all the way along and doesn’t tuck up underneath the hips then your dog may be carrying excess weight and have a higher BCS.

Waist:

What to do

Looking down on your dog’s waist and hips from above, you should notice that this area is much narrower than the width of the chest and ribcage.

What should you feel?

A slowly tapering abdomen leading from the wider chest to a narrow waist is the sign of an ideal body condition.

Low scoring

An underweight dog will have a noticeably narrow waist and the bones of the hips and spine may be easily visible and can be felt protruding under the skin. The more pronounced these bony projections, the more underweight they are and hence the lower their BCS.

High scoring

In overweight or obese dogs, the waist does not narrow towards the hips. The trunk or abdomen will often be just as wide as the chest, giving them a barrel-shaped appearance. In dogs with a very high BCS, there may even be fat pads at the waist which stick out even further than the width of the chest when viewed from above.

Once you’ve assessed all three areas, you can give your dog a score on the scale from 1-5, to truly determine if they are at a healthy weight for their size. If they’re not at an ideal BCS (a score of 3), then you can alter their portions or diet plan to get them back to healthy condition.

During sign-up at tails.com, we ask you to do a quick Body Condition Score along with telling us their weight and activity level so we can accurately calculate their calorie requirement. This ensures they always remain in a good and healthy condition, which will mean a longer and healthier life for your dog.

Like most things, practice makes perfect and practising the Body Condition Scoring will make sure that you know your dog’s ideal condition. If your dog needs a little help getting back in shape, you can edit their body condition on their tails.com profile. We’ll alter their calories and feeding plan to help them get back into shape.